Dear colleagues and avid SusChem supporters,
2015 was an important year for SusChem: Early in the year we published the new SusChem Strategic Innovation and Research Agenda (SIRA) which is the result of intensive discussions with you and our other stakeholders. It focuses on the solutions that the chemical industry and its customers and partners in industrial value-chains can bring to tackle the societal challenges that Europe is facing. As such SusChem is an important contributor to the European innovation landscape.
When analysing the first round of Horizon 2020 calls that were issued for the 2014-2015 period, we found that more than 100 calls are connected to technologies described in the SusChem SIRA. We see a similar trend for the 2016-2017 calls. This emphasises in a very tangible way the central role that the chemical industry plays in carrying out Research and Innovation actions that have a significant impact for Europe.
More importantly, SusChem is committed to mobilise its stakeholders to participate in the European innovation effort. We do not only do this through our yearly brokerage event but also through special efforts e.g. dedicated to SMEs. During our stakeholder event in June 2015 we conducted a special brokerage session for SMEs. Here we created an opportunity for SMEs to link with other companies, creating room for companies to get to know the special innovations and business propositions of the SMEs.
Looking forward, SusChem is now engaged in establishing its roadmap for the five years to come, geared towards the implementation of the SIRA. After the kick-off during the Stakeholder event in June we are now working hard on identifying priorities that will be translated into specific initiatives and lighthouse projects. We are looking forward to discussing the outcome with you, soon.
The end of 2015 has also seen a successful conclusion to the COP 21 discussions in Paris. Beyond the global negotiation between states, we all know that the world will need technology solutions to support the transition towards an economy with substantially reduced CO2 emissions. Here, SusChem is uniquely positioned with sustainability as our fundamental theme and the SIRA clearly focused on the many contributions that the chemical and industrial biotechnology sectors can make.
On behalf of the SusChem Board and the SusChem secretariat, we wish you all very happy and relaxing holidays and a healthy, happy and “sustainable” New Year. 2016 will be another important year for SusChem and we expect to see the first results from the SusChem inspired projects that were launched in the first two years of Horizon 2020 and in which many of you are participating.
Dr Klaus H. Sommer
Chairman of the SusChem Board
Head Consumer and Product Management Bayer Technology Services